This is like a less well done version of Thursday’s Three Things, a weekly feature that I forgot about one week in.
I was up until the wee hours of the morning watching the end of the Phillies-Diamondbacks game which lasted seven hours and six minutes. At one point Arizona was leading 7-1, but by the time I started watching in the bottom of the 13th, the game was tied 7-7. In that inning, the Phillies had the bases loaded with two outs and pitcher Tyler Cloyd coming up to bat. Because they didn’t have any options in the bullpen (or to pinch hit other than former Toronto fan favourite John McDonald), they were forced to let Cloyd bat. He dribbled a grounder two-thirds of the way up the third base line and hustled down to first, but was beaten by a very nice Martin Prado throw to end the inning. In his next at bat, Cloyd would line a double into the corner but was stranded there.
Because the Phillies had used up a lot of their bullpen, they called on right fielder (and former Blue Jay) Casper Wells to come in to pitch the top of the 18th. He looked fine at first, throwing 91 mph fastballs, and getting Cliff Pennington and Tuffy Gosewisch (former Blue Jays farm hand) out, but found himself being squeezed at the plate. His unwinding started after his walk of speedster Tony Campana. He allowed four runs after that walk when six straight D-backs reached. The Phillies’ new manager Ryne Sandberg went to remove Wells from the mound, sending him to right field, to bring in left fielder John McDonald to make his major league debut on the mound. Johnny Mac allowed a Cliff Pennington single before striking out Gosewisch to end the inning. That means that Johnny Mac, as a pitcher, has a career K/9 of 27 and a 50 K%. Gosewisch also had the poor distinction of making two outs in the same inning against two position players pitching.
The rare move of having two non-pitchers pitching got me thinking about the major league rule limiting coaching and managerial visits to two per pitcher per inning. Sandberg went out to visit Wells twice, meaning that Wells had to be taken out in the second visit. Normally, pitchers would be taken out of the game completely, but Wells went to the outfield. Now, the Phillies phailed to score in the bottom of the inning and lost 12-7, but if they had tied it up and the game had continued, would Wells have been allowed to pitch again? And did the umpires make a mistake in not forcing Wells to leave the game in the first place? I’ll have to look into the rulebooks for that. Perhaps there was a rule change that happened after Davey Johnson kept on switching Jesse Orosco and Roger McDowell between outfield and the mound.
Because of the bullpen usage from Saturday night/Sunday morning’s game, the Phillies have activated Roy Halladay to start Sunday afternoon’s game. Doc was set to make a rehab start for the AA-Reading Fightin Phils against Deck McGuire and the Fisher Cats, so Blue Jays fans would not be able to see that matchup. Because the decision to activate him came so late, Halladay was told to drive from Reading to Philadelphia at 2 am, meaning he would get to the park at his normal ungodly hour.
Google is not being fair to Brett Lawrie, not letting go his youthful indiscretions.
Speaking of youthful indiscretions, take look at this picture of Canada’s Justice Minister Peter MacKay in his younger days. Yankees t-shirt, really? I hope the press make him answer for that.